December 25, 2009 |
"The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus" is as unusual and idiosyncratic as its one-of-a-kind title. You'd expect no less from Terry Gilliam, and admirers of this singular filmmaker will be pleased to know that "Imaginarium" is one of his most original and accessible works. A member of the Monty Python troupe, Gilliam is nothing if not audacious; witness earlier films such as "Brazil," "Time Bandits" and "Twelve Monkeys." Here he applies his fantastic and fantastical imagination to a visually dazzling tale of combat for men's souls.
December 10, 2009
"The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus," Terry Gilliam's best film in years, isn't due to open until Dec. 25, but for those of you who can't wait, the American Cinematheque has brought back a few of this visionary director's greatest hits. On Saturday, luxuriate in the glory that is "Brazil," a science fiction satire that has lost none of its bite. And on Sunday, revisit the marvelous "Time Bandits," the story of a time-traveling 11-year-old that proves that smartly made films can captivate children and adults alike.
June 18, 2009 |
Chris Marker's "La Jetee" has been a totem for nearly half a century. It's a haunting half-hour film enshrouded in mystique. Marker (born Christian Francois Bouche-Villeneuve in 1921, either outside Paris, as many sources say, or in Ulan Bator, as the writer and director has claimed), has a godlike reputation among cinephiles, thanks both to the ingenious and often playful nature of his essayistic films (he's made dozens) and to his obscurity.
May 22, 2009 |
Terry Gilliam went to the movies the other night, and this is what he saw. "Trailers from 'Transformers,' 'G.I. Joe,' 'Harry Potter'; they all had the same explosions, the same sound mix, the same rhythms, it was all the same film," the director says, still not quite believing it. "Hollywood's been doing this for 20 years. When's it going to end?"
April 6, 2008 |
Calling Terry Gilliam a liar isn't an insult. It's a job description. Gilliam is often referred to as a dreamer, but he casts his lot not with visionaries but with frauds and mountebanks, tellers for whom a well-spun tale is its own reward. It is hard to envision a more perfect match between teller and tale than the one between Gilliam and Karl Friedrich Hieronymus, the Baron Munchausen, memorialized as the greatest liar in history.
August 26, 2005 |
Like a character in a fairy tale caught between the forces of light and those of darkness, "The Brothers Grimm" attempts to serve two masters. No, there is not a happy ending.